When I was in high school I loved the movie Hackers starring Angelina Jolie and Johnny Lee Miller. The movie never got rave reviews but became somewhat of a cult classic. I was enthralled with the idea of being smart enough to hack into a computer system.
Unlike the teens in the movie, I didn’t want to hack into the NY stock exchange or uncover some big government conspiracy, I just wanted to change my math grade to something other than failing so I didn’t have to take 10th grade math over again.
In the early 2000’s e-mail was truly an exciting form of communication. I would get home form school race to my computer, wait for the computer to connect online and wait to hear that familiar voice declare, “You’ve got mail!”.
When I was a teen I loved the internet, I loved instant messenger and my aol email. I loved spending my time in my room exploring parts of the world that both enlightened and frightened me. One day I came home to an e-mail from a friend entitled ILOVEYOU. Of course I immediately opened it without realizing that I was infecting my computer with one of the world’s most destructive computer virus’s of the time.
I found this graph from hp computers that shows exactly when the ILOVEYOU virus hit the world in its timeline of the worst computer viruses in history. All I remember is my dad swearing about the cost of the repair bill. I’ve since learned to be very wary of email attachments and just the internet in general. I think growing up both with and without the internet gave me an interesting prospective. I can’t imagine having my formidable years play out for the world to see on social media, it makes me WANNACRY, like the last virus on this list, that held computers hostage until they paid a fee.